XHTML + Voice

What is X+V?

XHTML+Voice brings spoken interaction to standard web content by integrating a set of existing technologies (i.e., XHTML and VoiceXML) that will enable multimodal and telephony access to information, applications and Web services from PCs, telephones, tablet PCs and wireless personal digital assistants (PDAs).

Comparing X+V and SALT

Like SALT, X+V is intended to support the development of applications that combine speech recognition with other forms of input such as a keyboard, stylus or keypad. These applications, called “multimodal” applications, will allow users to access information or services through a combination of different inputs.

Current Status

X+V is still a developing technology. To better understand the differences and similarities between X+V and SALT, check out this excellent article from eWeek.

Multimodal applications — the focus of both X+V and SALT — are expected to be more broadly deployed as cell phones and hand-held computers merge into single devices that provide both local computation and connectivity to back-end servers. It is hoped that these applications will overcome the problems with the voice-only interfaces of phones and the GUI-only interfaces of hand-held computers.

In early 2003, the VoiceXML Forum (of which both IBM and Motorola are members) released X+V 1.1 — an update to the original X+V specification. This version of X+V has been updated to match VoiceXML 2.0 (now a W3C Candidate Recommendation). In addition, the consortium has made a number of X+V sample applications available for X+V developers. The fourm released Version 1.2 of the XHTML+Voice Profile in March of 2004.

In May of 2005, Opera Software released Opera 8.0. The Windows version of the browser has an option that enables voice interaction through XHTML+Voice. This functionality is provided by the IBM® Multimodal Runtime Environment, which connects the Opera Browser to IBM Embedded ViaVoice® (the same technology currently shipping in certain auto navigation systems)

X+V Links

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